It’s interesting that survey data on this subject is often flawed.

Greg Piper reports at the College Fix.

The massive new campus sexual-assault survey has one giant design flaw

The Association of American Universities released the results of its 27-school “climate survey” on campus sexual assault on Monday, and officials explained on a conference call with reporters why this one is the gold standard.

Unlike earlier surveys, the AAU survey included both a large number of campuses and a large sample size at each participating school, said Bonnie Fisher, a consultant for survey design firm Westat and professor at the University of Cincinnati.

Prior surveys were “plagued” by differences in definitions and methods, how they were administered and how they were designed, Fisher said. The AAU survey precisely measured how many students said they were sexually violated by clearly defined methods of contact (penetration and touching) and “tactics” (physical force, drugs and alcohol, coercion, absence of affirmative consent).

You would think with this careful design spread across more than two dozen large research universities, the AAU survey results would differ notably from previous surveys that suffered from vague definitions, small samples and “selection bias,” meaning an overrepresentation of people with strong views on the subject in the survey pool – all of which contributed to implausibly high levels of reported assault.

Nope. This survey found slightly more sexual violence than the well-known but questionable statistic that 1 in 5 women are sexually assaulted in college:

The incidence of sexual assault and sexual misconduct due to physical force, threats of physical force, or incapacitation among female undergraduate student respondents was 23.1 percent, including 10.8 percent who experienced penetration.

This result made no sense to me, so I flipped to the section of the report that defines “incapacitation” (page viii of the executive summary), a concept that is so poorly explained on the average campus that it’s practically meaningless:

“….unable to consent or stop what was happening because you were passed out, asleep or incapacitated due to drugs or alcohol”

You’ll notice that is not a definition of incapacitation – it’s a tautology (incapacitation means being incapacitated) – and it’s not meaningfully different from how other surveys have treated incapacitation, as something you just know when it’s happening (to yourself or your partner).